Letter From A Birmingham Jail Essay

846 words - 4 pages

TUI University

Lionel Martinez

ENG 101 – English Composition 1

Dr. David Ojo

Module 1
Case Assignment 1

June, 8 2012

While King's letter was set and written in the 1960's, it is still prevalent today. Martin Luther King was not only a civil rights activist for Blacks, but his logic and rhetoric is to be admired. I feel it is our duty not only to read King's letter, but to use it as an educational tool. The letter, by King, is well written and a great example of how to write a letter formed essay. Ignoring the fact this letter was being written during the civil rights fights and protests in the 1960's, it was written by a well-educated and well known man who is respected ...view middle of the document...

Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly," In this quote he tries to tie everyone together to put everyone on an equal level. Then he follows that statement with an argument of logic, "Anyone who lives inside the United States can never be considered an outsider anywhere within its bounds." Which hammers out that everyone in the United States are one people and all are equal.
King also plays on our pathos when he mentions people from history. To play against our sense of right and wrong, he used Hitler as an example. "We should never forget that everything Adolf Hitler did in Germany was 'legal'..." Everyone knows that what Hitler did was wrong and was blight on human history. He mentions Hitler while working with the idea that his protest of unjust laws was not breaking the law. It shows an extreme situation with following laws and shows that his protest was not a malfeasance but a necessary action. King also quotes Abraham Lincoln "This nation cannot survive half slave and half free" and Thomas Jefferson for a positive spin on the situation, "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal." When King inserts these quotes at the perfect times it emphasizes his ideas.
Rhetoric is King's plaything throughout his letter. He is able to propose violent situations without making it look like...

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